Many houses were reportedly burnt when personnel of Operation Rainbow, a state security outfit, allegedly stormed Fulani settlements in Mangu Local Government Area of Plateau State.
The herders said although they could not ascertain the casualty figure, some people were killed in the incident.
According to the herders, the personnel of the operation arrived the communities around 5am and started shooting sporadically, setting their houses on fire, with an Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) following those burning the houses behind them.
But the coordinator of the said security outfit, Sitdang Mungak, denied the allegation, saying “such report is misleading.”
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“I was able to reach out to my operational team and there is no report that Operation Rainbow is launching any attack. If there is any irresponsible report reaching you, it is not our operatives. None of our Armoured Personnel Carrier (APC) has been on,” he said.
But the state chairman of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN), Nuru Abdullahi, while confirming the incident, called on the federal government to intervene before things get out of hand.
“We strongly believe the state government cannot handle this problem. Operation Rainbow led some thugs to burn the houses, which has proven that there is a plan to chase us out of Plateau.
“Prior to today’s incident, houses of our members in Sarpal, Kombun, Rinago, Dtmirle, Kangang, Aloghom, Fongon, Bongangida, Luggere, Gaude, Jwaksham, Borwa, Luggadimesa, Tidiw, among others, were burnt. We are, therefore, calling on President Bola Tinubu to salvage the situation,” he said.
Isa Ibrahim Jamo, another member of the affected community, who also witnessed the incident, alleged that security personnel burnt down houses in Changal, Kombili, Lamor, Washina, Gayam, Anguwan Baraya, Vivim communities and part of Jannaret.
“Our properties, including clothes, mattresses, fertiliser, food items, were burnt. Women and children in their numbers have fled to Gindiri and Kasuwan Ali communities to avert any unforeseen circumstances,” Jamo said.
When contacted, the spokesperson of the state police command, DSP Alabo Alfred, and that of 3 Division of the Nigerian Army, Rukuba Barrack, Lieutenant Colonel Ishaku Sabastine Takwa, did not respond to calls and messages by our correspondent.
Daily Trust Saturday reports that there has been crisis in the villages of Mangu Local Government Area in the last few months, where more than 100 people were confirmed killed, including women and children.